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using old t shirts to tie trees to stakes?

 
Posts: 136
Location: Gulf Islands BC (zone 8)
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I have a bunch of nut trees to plant this fall on a windy site. The ones going out this fall are chestnuts, and range from about 3 ft to about 5 ft high. The plan is to stake them with a single stake that will be driven in on an angle with the butt end facing into the wind. I saw this on a British gardening show with Monty Don. I think it should work but if not, we can always drive in more stakes this winter. The ground does freeze here but other than maybe a couple of weeks of snow it will be raining all winter so it's not a hard freeze.

I've been thinking about what soft material to use to tie the tree to the stake. I have over the years accumulated a lot of old t shirts and sweatshirts that I cut up to crochet rag rugs and seat cushions. I was thinking of cutting some 2 inch strips of t shirt and using that in a figure 8 tie to secure the trees to the stakes. I wouldn't have any concerns about using this kind of material for tomatoes or something that just has to spend one summer outside, but am wondering how well it would hold up for a perennial plant. Has anyone out there used t shirt 'rope' in a situation where it needs to resist being broken down by weather for a couple of years?

If necessary I can turn the strips of t shirt into a stronger and probably softer ropelike material which will still have some give in it but may be less stretchy either by quickly crocheting it into a long string or by twisting it, but no point in doing that extra step if the material itself is sturdy enough to hold up. Another option, if I want a heavier 2 inch strip for tying, would be to cut it as a 4 inch wide strip and fold it in half.

I think pantyhose (tights) would be the standard repurposed plant tying material, but it's been many years since I removed myself from work settings in which it was expected to dress that way. So I have a ton of old t shirt material but no pantyhose.
 
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Location: Ladakh, Indian Himalayas at 10,500 feet, zone 5
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Well, you can remove the stakes sometime next summer when the young trees have made some roots of their own. Stakes are supposedly not very helpful for trees, though if you are planting in fall in a windy location, I guess they won't put out much roots before winter, so initial staking sounds like a good idea. So t-shirt cloth sounds great to me -- it will probably last from fall planting through next summer.
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